EACC: Only 3 prosecuted for graft in three years

Tuesday March 17 2015

Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission chairman Mumo Matemu. FILE PHOTO |

Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission chairman Mumo Matemu. FILE PHOTO |  NATION MEDIA GROUP

By SAMWEL BORN MAINA
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The anti-corruption commission has successfully prosecuted only three people in three years from the nearly 10,000 complaints it has received.

Of the 9,465 reports of corruption it got over that period, the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission took up 4,501, according to a report it has given Parliament.

The rest of the reports were distributed to the other investigative agencies such as the National Police Service, the Kenya Revenue Authority and the Independent Police Oversight Authority.

This financial year alone, the commission has received 2,108 reports on corruption involving different government departments. It is currently investigating several senior government officials alleged to have engaged in corrupt dealings, many of which were related to procurement contracts.

According to the report submitted to the Justice and Legal Affairs committee of Parliament, the commission has completed investigations into 381 cases in the past three years and submitted the files to the Director of Public Prosecutions. Of these, only 22 cases have been concluded in court. Nine cases ended in acquittals, two were withdrawn and six were discharged.

Since 2012, according to the report, the commission has handled 27 high profile cases whose investigations were ongoing, completed or currently in court.
For instance, the commission was conducting three investigations on National Social Security Fund (NSSF), which has been linked to controversial property cases.

They include allegations that the NSSF board irregularly approved a Sh5 billion expenditure for infrastructure development at Tassia II scheme in Nairobi, which was awarded to China Jiangxi International Kenya Ltd.

It is also investigating the tender for design, supply, installation and commissioning of CCTV cameras and Restricted Access Control System at NSSF Building, also in Nairobi, and alleged misrepresentation at the NSSF board.

OFFICE BLOCK

Interestingly, EACC was in the process of buying an office block from NSSF, a deal that EACC Chairman Mumo Matemu said was suspended three weeks ago. The deal would have seen the anti-graft agency acquire seven floors at the new building.

An official at EACC told the Nation Tuesday that it was no longer interested in buying the new NSSF Parking Silo adjacent to the NSSF Building because of its exorbitant cost.

However, the NSSF Managing Trustee Richard Lang’at said: “They (EACC) did a request to the (NSSF) board and the board asked them to buy the premises at market rates. We are asking for Sh1.36 billion and we have agreed to sell it to them once they meet our terms for sale”.

Besides NSSF, EACC investigators have also been handling six files on the Kenya Pipeline Company where it is alleged that eight clearing agencies falsified documents to claim reimbursements and commissions amounting to Sh242.7 million.

“Investigations into the case will be completed at the end of July this year,” EACC commissioners told Parliament.

The commission is also set to complete investigations on alleged financial impropriety involving procurement for the proposed Greenfield Terminal at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi.

“Investigations will be completed at the end of April,” said the report.

Another high profile case being investigated by the commission is that of Geothermal Development Corporation (GDC), involving allegations of procurement irregularities during a tender for the purchase of land rigs, two incidents of financial impropriety and gross mismanagement.